Omega Constellation 18K 1970
100% Genuine & All Original
Fully Inspected, Serviced and Guaranteed
Beautiful Original Unrestored Solid Gold Dial
Original ‘Index Hands’ and Applied Gold/Onyx Batons
Immaculate Large 34mm Case, not including the Omega Crown
Clear Crisp Observatory Emblem on the Case-Back, Indicating Very Little Use
High Grade Chronometer 20 Jewel, Cal.1001 Automatic Movement in Sparkling Condition
Classic Top of the Range Omega in Immaculate & Simply Beautiful Condition
New High Quality Brown Genuine Crocodile Strap or Choice of Alternatives
Matching Vintage Omega Presentation Box As Shown, Included
14 Day UK and International No Quibble Sale or Return
VGWL 12 Months’ Written Warranty*
VGWL Lifetime Authenticity Guarantee
Free UK Next Day Signed for Insured Delivery
Overseas FedEx £45
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Since the company was founded in 1848, Omega has pioneered a huge range of innovations. The 40s saw their first luminescent ladies’ watch, their first tourbillon movements and the famous Seamaster, whilst the 50s and 60s introduced the legendary Constellation, Speedmaster, Seamaster 300 and Railmaster. Over these years, everyone from John F Kennedy to Elvis wore Omega watches on official duties. What’s more, in 1962, astronaut Wally Schirra took his Omega Speedmaster to space on NASA’s Mercury Sigma 7 mission and in 1969, the Speedmaster first landed on the moon.
Why this watch is ‘Important’
We have here a fully restored, top of the range, Omega Constellation Cal.1001 in 18ct yellow gold from 1970. Omega watches are well known for their advanced movements and this model is important for taking a huge leap forward regarding design, technology and performance.
In 1969 the Cal. 1001 launched Omega into the so called ‘fast beat’ movements, eight years ahead of Rolex …
Up and until 1950, most wristwatches beat at 18,000 beats per hour. This means the balance wheel completes three complete oscillations per second, with each half-swing allowing the escapement to release with a “tick” – which is in fact, a release of energy which advances the watch mechanism. These traditional watch movements were known as 5-beat, or 18,000 beats per hour (bph). However following the war, technical developments led to the introduction of 6-beat (21,600 bph) and even 5.5-beat (19,200 bph) movements which became commonplace in higher end watches during the 1960s.
The Omega Calibre 1001 however, beats at 28,800 or 8 bph. This is known as a ‘fast beat’ movement. 28,800 is now commonly regarded as the best compromise for wristwatch Chronometers. Theoretically the higher the beats per hour, the higher the accuracy of a watch. Put simply, this is because time is divided into finer increments. However, there are limits. These occur due to higher power consumption leading to the requirement and increased size of the mainspring, and more efficient auto winding mechanisms. Also, lubrication and wear were challenges, as also is the cost of manufacture, due to the much finer tolerances required. However, 36,000 bph or 10 beat movements have also been used by very successfully by Zenith in the El Primero, arguably the most accurate mechanical wristwatch and also by Girard Perregaux, Longines Movado and.. Seiko.
Apart from its high frequency of 28,800bph, the Omega Calibre 1001 movement incorporated a number of technologies, such as a hacking feature to allow more accurate time setting, instantaneous date and quickset (backwards and forwards), along with a thinner rotor to slow down and create less stress and wear on the winding mechanism. The automatic winding gear is also integrated into the movement, instead of attaching it to a manual-wind calibre as was usual. Together with an indirectly driven minute and seconds, this leaves space in the centre for a rugged rotor bearing, despite its low profile.
The Chronometer grade, copper tone (made of copper plated beryllium bronze) Omega Calibre 1001, 20 jewels, automatic movement with date function is pristine, having just been overhauled and serviced by our vintage Omega specialist watchmaker. This involves completely disassembling the movement to all its component parts, cleaning and inspection, then rebuilding using original Omega parts where required. When tested and calibrated on 9th September ’17 following its restoration, this watch was running to within +6 seconds per day. This is outstanding for a vintage watch of this age! The movement also has a power reserve of 42 hours.
The test results have been checked on our electronic watch Time-grapher. We have no hesitation therefore in offering 12 months written warranty with this watch.*
The movement is all correctly signed ‘Omega Watch Co Swiss’ ’20 Jewels’, with the Calibre number 1001 and ‘Adjusted to 5 Positions and Temperature’. The movement also carries the serial number 30,143,348 which dates the manufacture of this watch to 1970.
Incidentally, the 1000 series was one of the best selling of all Omega self-winding calibres. More than 1.5 million were used, not only as certified chronometers in Constellations, but also as the uncertified movements in Seamasters, Geneve and Speedmasters. The 1000 series calibres were also the last few Omega in-house Constellation movements before Omega outsourced its manufacture of mechanical watch movements. Omega, for reasons of cutting costs and surviving the Japanese Quartz revolution, replaced the in-house Constellation movement in 1984 with the ETA 2892-2 and renamed it the Omega Calibre 1111.
*Please note – our 12 months’ warranty is only applicable if the full list price is paid.
The dial here is special on a number of counts. Firstly and most obviously, you may have noticed it is signed not only with applied gold Omega logos x 2, but also by Turler. Turler was, and still is, a sizeable firm of Swiss jewellery and watch dealers based in Zurich – just as they still are today! While this does add to the rarity and interest of the watch, and some collectors do collect these Turler branded Omegas, this may or may not add significantly to the value of the watch, depending on its significance to the buyer.
More significantly, the Yellow dial here is made of solid gold. It has been finished with a yellow coating with a light vertical grain and with the usual thin layers of lacquer. The dial is also in first class condition and entirely original, i.e. it has not been restored or cleaned, save for some light, gentle dusting. Generally, we restore the dials the watches we present here for sale, however due to the outstanding original condition here, we have left this dial alone.
The dial is complete with original ‘Index’ hands and applied solid gold batons inlaid with black onyx. Please take a close look at the photos of this fabulous dial. It picks up the light and reflects it beautifully and it matches the case perfectly.
Incidentally, the ‘OM’ at the very bottom of the dial is an abbreviation for “Or Massif” which is French for “Solid Gold” and was used on Swiss watches during the 1970s. The T signifies the safe luminous paint used on this dial which was tritium.
In superb condition and lightly polished, the substantial and noticeably heavy 18ct solid Gold case measures 34mm in diameter, not including the original signed Omega crown. The case is in beautiful condition showing no signs of scratches dings or other marks visible to the naked eye. The outside of the case-back carries the famous 18ct ‘Observatory’ emblem which is in highly original, hardly worn condition – See photos for details of this superb case, the edges and especially the Constellation on the back. The Observatory emblem is often worn away to a greater or lesser degree and sometimes greatly so. Here it is distinct and crisp, indicating this watch has seen very little use.
Inside the screw-down case-back, bears the Omega Watch Co. triangle, the correct Omega model reference numbers 166052 / 168033, along with Swiss Geneva 18ct Hallmarks.
*Originally specified as Water Resistant to 30 metres. This has not been tested and is not guaranteed. Vintage watches should be kept clean and dry at all times.
The Strap and Buckle
The strap fitted is a new nicely matched high quality Brown Crocodile strap with an Omega gold plated buckle. Please note if a different style or colour of strap is preferred, please let us know and we will do our best to oblige, free of charge. We carry tan, conker, dark brown burgundy and black in stock, in plain padded leather, alligator, crocodile skin or lizard skin.
The Box and Papers
Although there are no original papers with this watch, the reference numbers, markings, signatures and hallmarks are all correct dating the watch to 1970.
Detailed particulars will be included with the receipt, along with our 12 months Warranty*. A separate insurance valuation for the replacement value will be provided at the time of sale and our ‘Lifetime Authenticity Guarantee’ which states: “If this watch proves to be anything less than totally authentic, or not as described, Vintage Gold Watches of London will offer you a full refund at any time”.
The watch also comes complete with the matching vintage Omega presentation box as shown in the photographs.
A highly collectable vintage gold watch from one of horology’s most famous names, which will provide an excellent financial investment as well as something to treasure and enjoy!
This is a truly top class example of an important Omega Constellation, in immaculate condition with an original dial. The watch is ready to wear and totally practical for everyday use. If treated with care it will make an excellent investment or family heirloom piece.
Even though vintage gold Omega prices have risen markedly in the past 12 months, we still feel great examples such as this are still undervalued, because as each year goes by, the world market for vintage Omega watches is expanding almost exponentially and so we think prices are destined to climb ever higher in the foreseeable future.
A word on our prices – We always try our hardest to acquire the very highest quality watches we can find, before then restoring them to the highest possible standards. We then offer these at the fairest prices we can, taking into account our pre and post sales care and service. This approach means we will never be the cheapest, but nor will we be the most expensive. Indeed there are some well-known stores in West London which are highly successful charging between two to three times the price you see here. We therefore consider our prices to be fair, given the quality of watches we have to offer.
We are happy to accept PayPal as this is the quickest method of payment. However, if you would like to pay by UK cheque or by UK bank transfer we will be pleased to assist you with this and pass on a 3% saving to you. Similarly, if you wish to pay by International SWIFT or Bank Wire Transfer we will provide you our BIC / Swift number and our IBAN number.
If you have any questions please call on Landline 0207 727 7095 or Mobile 07515 949250 or if calling from overseas on Landline +44 207 727 7095 or Mobile +44 7515 949250.
Please note, we welcome part exchanges.
Please also take a look at our other fine vintage gold watches.